Cart and Horse – Cause and Effect – Industrial Revolution and Climate Change

By Dr. Tim Ball – Re-Blogged From


Proponents of the anthropogenic global warming hypothesis (AGW) seldom, if ever, consider the null hypothesis. As a result, it is now accepted but still unproven. This parallels the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) whose work is accepted and applied as an underlying principle of policy and research in all countries even though it is found wanting by failed predictions (projections). You can see the effects of this in the US where the IPCC work is accepted by NOAA as the gold standard, which makes it the basis for all other research in every government department. The people, like Gavin Schmidt at NASA GISS, who are telling the politicians the work is valid are bureaucrats, most of them directly connected to the IPCC. In Canada, the Prime Minister used a report prepared for him by Gregory Flato, an Environment Canada employee, and a Lead Author of the 2013 IPCC Report. His Report says in part

The science is conclusive: Warming is unequivocal and human influence on the climate system is clear.

This is false but self-serving; they said it, so it is true. It is the result of the deliberate way the entire global warming deception was designed. However, beyond the science, what most people don’t understand is that it imposes certain philosophical and cultural views and values most of which are contrary to natural law. What they do is take normal events and present them as abnormal, by which they mean caused by humans. This creates a philosophical contradiction between humans being both natural and unnatural.

Some of the bizarre assumptions they create are that

· There are too many people on the planet.

· People are animals in a Darwinian sense, but an aberration not living by the rules of nature. In fact, by Darwin’s measure they are the most successful.

· Human development, especially as industrial societies, is an aberration and unnatural.

· People are using resources at an unsustainable rate, some more than others.

· The worst offenders are the ‘developed’ nations thus making them a bigger aberration.

· Human actions are unnatural and thereby causing irreversible damage.

· The only solution is total government control at all levels.

· This nested control requires a single over-arching world government because the impacts of the aberrant humans are global.

· Evolution does not apply to human social and economic development.

· Darwin’s evolutionary theory, which they believe, says animals and their behavior are a response to the environment. However, they say humans are the creator of the environment through global warming – it is how the Gaia hypothesis became part of their theoretical picture.

In its extreme form, these views of humans were expressed by Ingrid Newkirk of the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) who said, “Mankind is cancer; we’re the biggest blight on the face of the earth.” The sentiment is more moderately expressed but similar in this quote from the preamble to the 1994 world conference on population in Cairo;

There is also general agreement that unsustainable consumption and production patterns are contributing to the unsustainable use of natural resources and environmental degradation as well as to the reinforcement of social inequities and of poverty with the above-mentioned consequences for demographic parameters.

All these assumptions are necessary to perpetuate the myth of AGW. A recent article, “New climate reconstruction study claims humans have been causing warming since the onset of the Industrial Revolution,” is such a study. It was designed to catch media attention. Most climate articles, especially those published by Nature, only seek a headline. They even set up an offshoot in 2011, Nature Climate Change, to further politicize and propagandize the issue. A headline is the objective of the machinations by NASA GISS to create the “hottest year on record” even by impossible minuscule amounts. The headline is everything, and subsequent refutations receive no attention.

There are warning signs all over the article: including

· the journal in which it is published

· the multitude of authors, 25 in total.

· their evidence for the human causation claim is from model simulations,

· the article assumes evidence for AGW is proven

· even a cursory reading questions whether the article was peer-reviewed

· The article was introduced through a press-release. Why? To get the headline.

· It is impossible to identify the human portion of warming even in the modern instrumental record. The IPCC achieved it by ignoring virtually every variable of the complex system that is the weather. It is a predetermined result that ignores the fact that in every record, temperature increase precedes CO2 increase.

Nic Lewis provides a solid deconstruction of the article at Climate Audit. He concludes,

It appears that the claim in Abrams et al. that the diagnosed early onset – about 180 years ago in some regions – of industrial-era warming is of anthropogenic origin is based on inappropriate evidence that does not substantiate that claim, which is very likely incorrect.

The idea that it is only evident in some regions contradicts the constant claim by AGW proponents that events are not significant unless they are global. They made this claim with both the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) and Little Ice Age (LIA).

In the press release the Lead researcher (who was lead author?) states

“It was an extraordinary finding,” “It was one of those moments where science really surprised us. But the results were clear. The climate warming we are witnessing today started about 180 years ago.”

No it didn’t, it started some 330 years ago at the nadir of the LIA. The results were clear but irrelevant because the assumptions are wrong and the evidence used is inadequate and contradicts the total evidence.

The statement is no surprise because it is what they wanted to find. They already believed that the warming since the nadir of the LIA is due to the human activities of the Industrial Revolution (IR). It appears that they knew if they could extend the warming period back it would reinforce the AGW claim. What they forget is that even the IPCC had the decency to say the human signal is not clearly detectable until 1950. In fact, it is exactly the opposite; the IR was triggered by climate change not as the authors claim. There is no evidence that the IR triggered the warming except in the IPCC Reports, and we know they are wrong because every prediction they made since 1990 was wrong. If the prediction is wrong, the science is wrong.

The general temperature pattern of the earth over the last 1000 years is shown in the diagram of Northern Hemisphere temperatures that became 7 (c) in the 1990 IPCC Report (Figure 1).


Figure 1

It was the graph that the IPCC determined to eliminate through the so-called hockey stick. The Nature article focuses on the extent of the warming period and argues that the human warming covers 180 years of the approximately 330 years since the nadir of the LIA in 1680. They contradict the IPCC claim that the LIA did not occur.

The Industrial Revolution marked the switch from wood to coal as a source of energy in England. Wood was virtually the only source of heat energy at the time. It remains a major source today, but little is known about total amounts. As the temperatures declined from the Medieval Warm Period several factors put increasing pressure on wood sources and triggered innovation and adaptation.


Figure 2

Figure 2 (produced by IPCC member Martin Parry in a 1975 study on the impacts of cooling) shows the changes in land use for the County of Berwickshire on the Scottish border for the period from the MWP to the LIA. The loss of agricultural land put increased pressure on remaining land that triggered forest clearing. It also created invention and innovation with small technologies that triggered the Agricultural Revolution defined as a

…gradual transformation of the traditional agricultural system that began in Britain in the 18th century. Aspects of this complex transformation, which was not completed until the 19th century, included the reallocation of land ownership to make farms more compact and an increased investment in technical improvements, such as new machinery, better drainage, scientific methods of breeding, and experimentation with new crops and systems of crop rotation.

Surplus food is surplus time, and it also allowed people to live and work in cities. As I tell farmers, there are no farms in the cities, but there are no cities without farms.

Other factors that placed pressure on forest resources included

· Colder conditions forced a switch from open single room residences with a hole in the roof for smoke to escape to half-timbered houses with more rooms and often a fireplace in each room.


Claimed to be the oldest house in England

· Conflict over resources pushed for the growth of merchant fleets and navies to protect them and the nation. For example, herring were forced out of the Baltic by cooler water and into the North Sea where a fishing war began between the English and the Dutch. The amount of oak and other woods required for building a single galleon was enormous. Samuel Pepys’ virtually created the Royal Navy and his famous diaries complain constantly about getting adequate timber. Vice Admiral Collingwood (1748-1810) was so concerned about future needs that he carried acorns in his pocket, and when walking in the countryside, he planted one in every suitable site. Admiral Lord Nelson was also concerned.

After visiting the forest in 1803, Nelson asked the Admiralty to ensure more trees were planted, and the so-called Trafalgar Oaks flourished.


· Demand for various forms of metal work, including armaments, farm equipment, and building materials placed greater demand on wood for charcoal.

· A severe frost in 1709 reportedly destroyed 75 % of the walnut trees and damaged many others.

· Pressure for forest resources triggered various legislative changes including freeing up Royal Forests reserved solely for the King, in a process called disafforestation.

The Forest of Dean was subject to disafforestation in 1667. It was a major center of charcoal production with a unique form of licensing called Freemining that soon put pressure on the resource.

The Forest of Dean also has coal and iron ore seams close to the surface.

The existence of coal and iron ore, together with charcoal from the Forest for smelting, stimulated early industrial development in the area.

You can visit the symbol of the Industrial Revolution, the Iron Bridge opened in 1781.


Nearby you can visit the Ironbridge Museums, a remarkable sequence of small towns all displaying and commemorating in living museums where one of the greatest advances in human evolution and development occurred.

The authors of the study claiming AGW began much earlier than previously thought were apparently predisposed to prove what they already believed. They accept that AGW is proved when the only ‘proof’ is in the output of the IPCC computer models that are consistently wrong. The authors, like all AGW proponents, in their determination to “blame humans” for every single change, label each change an aberration. They ignore the time sequences and preponderance of other events and facts that provide a more logical explanation. The false picture they create forces policies and practices that are often more destructive. How else can you consider philosophies that result in bumper stickers that say


[Note: the original featured image, a hand-drawn cartoon of a cart and horse was removed a few minutes after publication and replaced with the current image, due to me realizing there was a copyright restriction on it. The error was mine, not by Dr. Ball. -Anthony]



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